STT County Producers Must Submit FSA County Committee Nominations by Aug. 2

Fresh produce grown by Virgin Islands farmers (photo by Chuck Munson))

Farmers and ranchers have until Aug. 2 to nominate candidates to serve on the St. Croix County Farm Service Agency (FSA) Committee. The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) accepts nominations each year in certain local administrative areas (LAAs) for individuals to serve on these locally led committees.

“The Aug. 2 deadline is quickly approaching,” said Mark Carlton, district director for FSA in St. Croix County. “Committee members play a critical role in the day-to-day operations of the agency and are vital to how FSA carries out disaster programs, as well as conservation, commodity and price support programs. This is your opportunity to have a say in how federal programs are delivered in our county.”

This year, St. Thomas County is accepting nominations for LAA 3.  Agricultural producers who participate or cooperate in a USDA program and reside in the local administrative areas are allowed to run for election this year. They can be nominated to be a candidate for the county committee. Cooperating producers are persons who have provided information about their farming or ranching operation to the Farm Service Agency, even if they have not applied or received program benefits.

Nationwide, more than 7,700 dedicated members of the agricultural community serve on county Farm Service Agency committees. The committees are made up of three to 11 members who serve three-year terms. Individuals may nominate themselves or others and qualifying organizations may also nominate candidates. USDA encourages minority producers, women and beginning farmers or ranchers to nominate, vote and hold office.

Hans Lawaetz and his Senepol cattle at Annaly Farms on St. Croix. (Source file photo)

Producers should contact the St. Croix County Farm Service Agency office about how to get involved. To be considered, a producer must sign an FSA-669A nomination form. The form and other information about Farm Service Agency (FSA) county committee elections are available at www.fsa.usda.gov/elections.

Election ballots will be mailed to eligible voters beginning Nov. 1.